Saved from Bombs in Nepal on Thanksgiving Day

We approached a police road block at about 10 pm after driving for over 6 hours from Kathmandu, Nepal.  Albert & I had missed our flight coming from New Delhi trying to get to ServLife India on the border of India & Nepal for our pastors training conference. We had been in New Delhi for some meetings. I realized our driver would not pass the road block after trying to convince him to drive ahead. He said we would be shot with bullets from the RNA (Royal Nepal Army) if he drove past the road block. There was no one in sight on the road. We were surrounded by mountains in the middle of no where. He said he did not want to die that night and neither did I. Not because I fear death but because I want to grow old with my wife, watch my son grow up, have more children, and see the gospel preached around the world. We turned around realizing we were going to have to find a place to stay, but at this late hour it would be very
difficult. We passed several houses all locked up and finally saw one small hut and a fire inside. We got out and were welcomed by a poor Nepali family along the road. We sat around their fire and we shared stories and they spoke that 2 days ago that 24 army soldiers had been killed down the road by Maoists and that is why the road blocks were there. They had also discovered 24 bombs being used to blow up supply trucks. As she is telling us this, I see a truck parked right in front of her small house made of grass and mud. When the lady found out we had a children’s home, she brought us a small girl and asked us to take her. She said that her village of just 150 families had over 45 orphans from the Maoists conflict. We told her that our facility is not adequate to take more children but would keep in touch with her. I wanted to tell her that we would take all 45, perhaps one day we can. We prayed for the family and shared the gospel with her. We also gave her some extra medicine for the children in the community. She was happy. It was Thanksgiving day when this happened and I told her about this holiday. We were given an empty room and slept on a wooden floor with one blanket. It was very cold as I did not have proper clothing. As I laid down to sleep, I was cold and hungry. I had only eaten one meal that day on our plane ride about twelve hours earlier. I began to ask myself, “Why am I here missing my son’s second birthday? I am away from my wife, cold, and hungry. I could be many places right now with my family and here I am stranded in the middle of the mountains, surrounded by Maoists rebels, hiding out in a grass hut.”
I realized at this moment that it is the love of God that motivates me. After getting to the conference, there was such a joy deep within my heart of seeing a dream become a reality. God is about turning dreams into reality when they align with his redemptive purposes for a lost world. To see a movement of indigenous, young Indians giving their lives to preach the gospel and start churches among their own people is what ServLife is all about. There is no greater cause in the world than seeing the love of God extend to every person on the globe.

Joel Vestal

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